If you want to do a project with your child to make a gift for their grandmother or other relatives or their class at school, this would be a great bonding experience. I’ve had a lot of fun lately making butter from whipping cream. I use Snowville’s Whipping Cream from grassfed cows because I like the way they do things. Then I take the butter and use it to make Shortbread Cookies. I did it with a food processor which can make it safe and quick to work with their attention span.
Let the cream sit at room temperature until it comes up to around 55 deg Celsius.
Pour into the food processor up to the liquid line and let ‘er rip.
The cream will become thicker and thicker turning into whipped cream, keep going.
It will be thicker and then start to separate into buttermilk and butter – it’s amazing, but pretty cool.
The food processor will rock a little as the butter sticks to the blade and separates from the buttermilk.
Drain the buttermilk into a container – use this in butter milk biscuits, or pancakes, or any buttermilk recipe.
Rinse the butter in cold water to remove any buttermilk left, squeezing and reshaping it to get out the buttermilk.
Place the butter into a container that will hold the butter snugly, and use plastic wrap on top to keep the air out and place in the fridge.
You could stop here, with the butter and buttermilk, or you could go on to make shortbread cookies using the butter. First though, clean out the food processor because you can use it for the next step. Butter cookies has always been one of my favorites. I regret that I can not stay away from them. They’re so buttery, they melt in your mouth and are so easy to make. My biggest problem is waiting for the cookies to cool so they don’t crumble when I pick them up. The shortbread cookies are made with quite a bit of butter, so keep them refrigerated.
This shortbread recipe is from The Good Housekeeping Test Kitchen Cookie Lover’s Cookbook. While this is a binder FULL of cookie recipes the shortbread recipe is one of my favorites and one I love to bring out during the holidays when all diets are ignored for a little bit. This shortbread uses cake flour which makes it dissolve when it touches your tongue. It doesn’t matter how careful I am with the shortbread taking it out of the pan is difficult. If you use a cake pan it falls apart when you take it out. If you use a springform mold it is a little easier to slip your knife under the cookie and loosen it up, but no matter, it will still crumble here and there as you try to move it to the wire racks to cool. That’s the very nature of shortbread – it is a melt in your mouth buttery goodness treat that is hard to resist. Showcasing your homemade butter in homemade butter cookies – fantastic and easy.
- 1½ cups cake flour(not self-rising)
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1½ cups butter (3 sticks) cut into pieces and softened
- Preheat oven to 325 F.
- In large bowl, with wire whisk, mix both flours, sugar, and salt.
- Knead butter into flour mixture is well blended and holds together.
- (Or, in food processor with knife blade attached, pulse dry ingredients to blend. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.)
- Divide dough in half.
- With hand, pat evenly onto bottoms of two ungreased 8-inch round cake pans.
- With fork, prick dough all over to make attractive pattern.
- Bake until golden, about 40 minutes, rotating pans between upper and lower oven racks halfway through.
- Remove from oven; immediately run knife around sides of pans to loosen shortbread, then cut each shortbread round into 16 wedges.
- Cool completely in pans on wire racks.
- When cool, with small metal spatula, carefully remove cookies from pans.
- Store shortbread in an airtight container up to 5 days, or freeze up to 3 months.
Food Embrace presented a blogger cookie swap – The International Blogger Cookie Exchange 2011. We swap cookie recipes and make the recipe of another blogger, adapting it to our tastes. Let me tell you, I am not really a cookie baker. I don’t mind making them, but it always seems as though I bake one day and by the next the plate is empty again, plus there’s that watching the oven thing. Growing up I loved the white sugar cookies, with white flour and sugar icing. I have grown to enjoy more flavor now. This cookie with whiskey and molasses was well liked by my husband and I think those strong flavors make for a real guys cookie. I can taste molasses, but my husband was tasting whiskey and he loved it.
I do like using local ingredients – so instead of Bourbon, I used OYO whiskey made by Middle West Spirits located in Columbus. When Middle West Spirits puts out the word they’re releasing some of the good stuff, if we are in need, my husband will call to reserve a couple of bottles and run over after work to pick it up.
My recipe came from Andrea the proprietor of Food Embrace. These cookies are chewy, and dense and if you look at mine, not so pretty because I just dropped dollops down without thinking about making it pretty. I’m a dollop kind of person so that works. The dark color comes from the molasses and the spices. I love that there isn’t a lot of butter or oil and it uses unsweetened applesauce (I used my own home made, so it’s local also). These are tasty cookies, and a great alternative to the usual holiday fare.
In a mixing bowl, combine:
1/2 cup whiskey (or bourbon)
1/3 cup Molasses
1/2 cup Unsweetened Applesauce
2 tbs Unsalted Butter, room temperature
3 tbs Packed brown sugar
In a separate bowl combine and whisk together :
- 1 cup Whole Wheat Flour (You can use Whole Wheat Pastry or White Whole Wheat, whatever is handy)
- 1 cup All Purpose Flour
- 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
- 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp Ground Clove
- 1/4 tsp Ground Allspice
Preheat oven to 350 and prepare two cookie sheets with silpat or parchment paper. On medium speed combine the ingredients in the mixing bowl. Slowly add the dry ingredients until they are well incorporated.
Using a two teaspoons, drop dollops on to the cookie sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.
A toothpick inserted will come out clean or with just a few crumbs on it. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Makes about 50 cookies.
I have to confess, I didn’t use a toothpick to test, and I only got about 24 cookies from the recipe.
Tip – use vegetable oil spray or wipe measuring cup with oil before pouring molasses in it. The molasses will slide right out.
What are you favorite type of cookie for the holidays?